The Facebook Guide to Breakups

Photo by flickr user Sontra (Steven Orr)

By Nicole Papantoniou


He promised her they would go to her prom because they blew off his.He wasn’t interested, but she really wanted to go.

“I guess it’s no big deal,” she told him.“We’ll always have next year.”They had been a couple for two-and-a-half years by that point.

She bought the first dress she tried on.It was a silvery metallic dress with black lace from Betsy Johnson.She was shocked it fit so well and immediately knew it was “the one.”It fell right below her knee and showed off her arms.

He tried his hardest to match her dress and pulled it off rather well.He wore a black tuxedo with a soft gold vest and a matching bowtie.The off-white corsage he bought her complemented her dress and matched his boutonniere.Everyone knew they were together.

They had their tiffs that night like they normally did but were back to normal before prom was over.Pictures of them smiling and holding hands documented the entirety of the evening.In some they were dancing, in others they were sitting down eating.And of course, there were many taken before the event with the other couples.She was glowing in every picture and he stood next to her proudly.All of the pictures screamed: this is my girl.

Snapshots from that night were posted immediately on Facebook.“You look so hot!” commented some of her friends.“You two are really cute,” said others.

By the time they broke up that summer and she started dating somebody else, all proof that prom ever existed disappeared.He untagged himself in every picture and deleted her as a friend on Facebook.

“It’s easier to not think about you at all,” he told her, “than to constantly be reminded about it via Facebook.”

The two were still friends in “real” life, and they spoke all the time.They even continued to hang out.He eventually did add her back, only to delete her two more times.


We were both lying on my bed.“I can’t believe we’re really breaking up,” he said.

I looked at him, sad and nervous that I was making a mistake.

“I just need some time,” I told him.“I’m not happy.”

We reminisced about the good times we shared: the first time we met at the group interview for RA applicants, the first time we kissed at Murphy’s when he asked me to dance, the summer when we first got to know one another and how we hung out at school before and after class and during most meals.

Was I really ready to give up my dinner date, the one person who was always willing to try new foods with me and the one person I knew I could have great conversations with? Who else would try their hardest to keep up with the million different thoughts that dart around in my head on a daily basis?

“Ugh, now I have to change my Facebook,” he said out loud with a chuckle before I had another second to dwell over our potential break up.

“Excuse me?” I asked.You’ve got to be kidding.

“Well, yea,” he said, expecting me to know exactly what he meant.“I have to change my status and get rid of all the pictures.It’s going to be such a pain.”

I looked at him, angry and confused.Did nine months of dating really come down to this?


“I’m deleting him from Facebook,” she said smugly to her roommate after crying over him for the past week.“He f***** me over.I want him to realize how badly.”He slept with six other girls in addition to her, all behind their backs too.

She clicked through hundreds of photos taken over the couple of months that they were seeing each other.Untag, untag, untag, delete.She sent messages to her friends to take down any photos of them that she didn’t have direct control over.

“Let’s keep this between you and me,” she remembered him telling her.“I’d rather not have other people in our business.”He told the other girls the same thing.They were all in the same circle of friends.

“I walked away politely,” she said.“I acted maturely and would react the same way again if I had to.”

She hasn’t spoken to him since and has no idea how he responded.

“All I know is that I wanted him to be in physical pain, no matter what the capacity.”

She continued to check his Facebook for the next couple of months to see if he was in a relationship.She noticed no word on his profile and eventually stopped checking, she claimed.“Now I only check once a week or so, or whenever I remember.”It’s been almost a year since they stopped talking.


“Anthony’s mom deleted me from MySpace,” she told her roommate while casually eating animal crackers at her desk and procrastinating.“I think she deleted my friend, too.”

She dated him for two years and his mom absolutely loved her.“In pictures she’d call me her future daughter-in-law with a heart next to it.It was kind of weird but I didn’t mind.”

A few weeks after they broke up, she received a private message from his mom asking for her to get back together with him.She wasn’t interested; they broke up for a reason.She didn’t respond to the mother and acted as if she never received the message.She couldn’t help if he was “heartbroken” as his mother put it.She just wasn’t interested.

Her and Anthony spoke for a little while, but they never got back together. His mother couldn’t fathom that though they’re not together, they can be friends on MySpace. Little did she know that cyberspace isn’t actually comparable to “real” life.

The line between the two has become extra blurry over the past couple of years.Although these social networks were created merely as an extension of daily life, they seem to be taking over.Who cares what Facebook says or who you’re friends with on MySpace?It seems like a double life people are living.Is it real or is it fake?Better yet, does it even exist?

The Little Rebellion

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